Kennett's Antavies Drake is chased by the Royals' Wes McCollum as he cruises toward the basket. [Order this photo]
BROSELEY, Mo. -- A season-high point total looked unlikely for the Kennett Indians varsity boys basketball program early in Tuesday's road contest against the Twin Rivers Royals.
Kennett, which entered the contest averaging 60 points per game, trailed Twin Rivers 6-0 with 5:30 remaining in the first quarter.
The offensive drought was short-lived.
Kennett calculated the next nine points of the game to take a 9-6 lead with 2:13 remaining in the first period. The Indians never trailed after the first quarter on its way to a convincing 81-58 win at Twin Rivers.
"I kind of thought they were going to play us man so we had been working on it the last couple days," Kennett coach Jim Vaughan said. "We've faced so many zones and for not having to face any type of man defense for a while I thought our offensive execution was pretty effective. I thought we moved each other well and fed the post well. We got efficient looks in our half-court offense."
The 81 points Kennett's offense tallied surpasses its previous season-high of 80 against South Pemiscot on Jan. 17.
Kennett's Adam Grantham fights for a rebound with Twin Rivers' Josh Woodham. [Order this photo]
The Indians led the game 13-10 after the first quarter. The Royals managed to limit Kennett's Antavies Drake and Kevonte Mitchell to just two points in the opening quarter with a Triangle and Two defense.
"We came out with a Triangle and Two on Mitchell and Drake," Benson said. "It was getting to Mitchell the first quarter and then they started attacking it and running screens. They did a good job of countering it. Our plan was to stop Mitchell and Drake, slow the ball down and get great shots. We did it for a little bit, but then they started pressuring us and got some turnovers."
Drake recorded 10 of Kennett's 20 points in the second period, helping the Indians stretch its lead to double-digits at 30-19 entering halftime. Mitchell recorded five points in the second quarter and six in the third as Kennett increased its lead to 58-40 entering the fourth third quarter. Drake calculated a team-high 15 points in the contest and Mitchell added 13.
Kennett's defense managed 13 steals in the game.
"I was pleased with our offensive transition," Vaughan said. "We looked to run and we looked to throw it ahead. If we didn't have anything most of the time we made a good decision of getting it back out and continuing a good offensive possession."
Michael Snider led Twin Rivers in scoring with 16 points. Cade Lowe scored 13 points and Eric Ray added 10 for the Royals.
"I felt like at times we were getting good shots," Benson said of his offense. "Anytime we got the ball down low we were getting good shots. Every now and then when they created a turnover it didn't go our way, but when we were running our stuff I felt like we got decent shots."
Cameron Harper recorded a team-leading three 3-pointers for Kennett and finished the game with 11 points.
The Indians' Antonio Primer collected nine rebounds. Adam Grantham and Jajuan Wallace brought down seven rebounds a piece for Kennett.
Kennett next travels to district rival Charleston Friday. Kennett had played Charleston in the Class 3, District 1, championship the past two seasons.
"They are the real deal," Vaughan said of Charleston. "Everybody around here is saying they are good enough to be state champs. I've seen them play and they are good enough. There is not a scouting report on them. They just do basketball things . . ."
Charleston enters the contest ranked No. 1 in Class 3 and has not lost to a Missouri team this season.
"They get down and play the game tough, which is going to be awesome for us," Vaughan continued. "We need to know where we stand right now. That game leads us into our conference tournament and we want to come out of that well, but we've got to know where we are at with Charleston so we know what to do over the next three weeks to get ready for the district tournament. Their one loss is to a West Memphis team that is 6'10, 6'9, 6'8. Charleston is a solid basketball team and Danny does a great job with them. It's going to be a fun game."
Kennett 81, Twin Rivers 58
KHS 13 20 25 23 - 81
TRS 10 9 21 18 - 58
KENNETT (81) - Antavies Drake 15, Cameron Harper 11, Daniel Lockhert 7, Kevonte Mitchell 13, Adam Grantham 7, Antonio Primer 9, Jajuan Wallace 7, Dewayne Parker 8, Divante Taylor 4. FG 35, F/T 5/14, F 16. (3-pointers: Drake 1, Harper 3, Wallace 1. Fouled out: Mitchell)
TWIN RIVERS (58) - Chris Morse 6, Blake Moore 4, Michael Snider 16, Wes McCollum 3, Josh Woodham 4, Eric Ray 10, Cade Lowe 13, Team 2. FG 23, F/T 7/13, F 11. (3-pointers: Morse 1, Moore 1, McColum 1. Fouled out: none)
The Kennett junior varsity boys basketball team overcame a 15-8 deficit at the end of the first quarter on its way to a 58-52 win against the Twin Rivers Royals Tuesday.
Harold Weeden recorded 36 of Kennett's 58 points in the contest and was 12 of 15 from the free throw line.
The Kennett freshman boys basketball team will play Cooter today at 7:15 p.m. in the semifinals of the Campbell Tournament.